The Sundance Film Festival kicks off on Thursday night with the premiere of “The Bronze,” which opens in the same plum spot that launched “Whiplash” last year. And like ”Whiplash,” “The Bronze” focuses on hyper-devoted players in a niche world of competition.
“The Bronze,” directed by Bryan Buckley (he made the 2004 Sundance short “Krug”), tells the story of a washed-up Olympics gymnast named Hope (Melissa Rauch) who tries to regain her glory days in a small town. The buzzy comedy, which hasn’t screened widely yet, is already drawing comparisons to “Napoleon Dynamite,” thanks to quotable one-liners in its screenplay. Rauch co-wrote it with her husband Winston, and they cast Marvel heartthrob Sebastian Stan as an aging male Olympics medal-winner who serves as the love interest/arch nemesis.
Stan, coming off a strong 2014 thanks to his pivotal role as the Winter Soldier in “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” spoke to Variety about making “The Bronze.”
Tell me about the premise of the “The Bronze.”
It’s about the world of gymnastics. It’s a world we know very little about, and it’s a dark comedy about what happens to some of these triathletes that we see in competition who train since they are very young and their life just becomes about winning. Hope, after winning a bronze medal, lives in this bitter world, stuck in reflecting about the past and reliving her memories in a small town. I play Lance Tucker who is the splitting image of her, an ex-gold medalist-turned-adviser turned mentor.
Do you do your own stunts?
A little bit. I did a lot of research into the world of gymnastics and what kind of training these guys do. I watched a lot of videos, as many as I could find. God bless the Internet for that. I looked at the men’s Olympics teams from the last decade, going back to the ’70s and ’80s. A gymnast is the most physically all-around-perfect specimen. The training is so difficult on so many levels. It’s a very twisted world, in my opinion. We live in an age now where we’re seeing different sides to sports. We’re seeing what we see on TV, and then we’re seeing all the other stuff that goes into forming the image.
How did you get cast?
The script got sent to me by my agent. I read it and it was literally one of the things where I couldn’t stop laughing. I was laughing so much, I was calling my friends and quoting my character. Sometimes you read something, and you get so excited to the point where you can’t stop thinking about it. I then had a meeting with Melissa and Winston and Bryan Buckley. We had a two-hour conversation about our ideas. I was very lucky, I didn’t need to audition.
Have you been to Sundance before?
I’ll tell you, I’ve never been to Sundance. I have to get on a plane immediately on Friday [to shoot another movie], so I won’t actually be around for long. I always see those cast portraits, and all I ever wanted was to be in one of those portraits with a beard. But I won’t even be able to do that.
How has starring in “Captain America” changed your career?
Credit is due where credit is due–2014 was a very different year for me because of “Winter Soldier.” The awareness of me in terms of the industry has been very different. It’s granted me more opportunity to be able to search for the projects I want to be involved in, and work with the kind of filmmakers I’m really interested in working with. Bryan Buckley, to me, I feel like he’s going to be someone you’re going to know for a long time time. I was like, “Wow, I got the chance to work this guy before everyone is going to want to work with him.”
SECTION U.S. Dramatic Competition
RUN TIME 115 min
In 2004, Hope Ann Greggory became an American hero after winning the bronze medal for the women’s gymnastics team. Today, she’s living in her father’s basement in her small hometown—washed up, largely forgotten, and embittered. Stuck in her past glory, Hope is forced to reassess her life when a promising young gymnast who idolizes her threatens her local celebrity status. Will she mentor the adoring, hopeful protégé, take her down, or both?
Director Bryan Buckley, whose short film Krug played at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival, returns with his hilariously raunchy feature-film debut. Teaming with co-writer and lead actor of the film Melissa Rauch, they create a lovably loathsome character who makes Tonya Harding look like Grace Kelly. Featuring a star-making performance by Rauch, unforgettable scenes, and many quotable lines, The Bronze is comedy gold.
I’ve added over 800 HD captures of Sebastian from his time on the late CW series Gossip Girl which premiered in 2007. You can view those in the gallery now. 🙂
Deadline.com — In addition to returning in his Bucky Barnes/The Winter Soldier character in Captain America 3, Sebastian Stan has been set for two strong roles. On the heels of wrapping the Duplass brothers’ film The Bronze, he will play NASA scientist Dr. Chris Beck in Ridley Scott’s The Martian co-starring Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Chiwetel Ejoifor, Jeff Daniels and Kristen Wiig, a film based off of the pioneering e-book and bestselling novel by Andy Weir.
Stan has also just been set to play Joshua, the estranged son to Meryl Streep’s rocker mom, in the Jonathan Demme-directed Ricki And The Flash at TriStar. Written by Diablo Cody, the film also stars Kevin Kline and Rick Springfield. Then it’s back to Captain America 3.
EW.com — The cast of The Martian is getting even starrier: EW has exclusively confirmed that Chiwetel Ejiofor, Sebastian Stan, and Mackenzie Davis are the latest to join in director Ridley Scott’s The Martian, due in theaters November 2015. They join previously announced cast members Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig, Kate Mara, Sean Bean, Donald Glover, Michael Pena and Jeff Daniels.
The Martian, adapted from the best-selling novel by Andy Weir, is about Mark Watney (Damon), an astronaut who gets left behind on Mars when his crew mistakenly believes him dead. “It’s quintessential Robinson Crusoe,” Ridley Scott tells EW. Drew Goddard (World War Z) penned the screenplay, and Damon and the rest of the cast quickly jumped aboard. “This is one of those movies that’s had a blessed life,” says producer Simon Kinberg. “Every actor is doing it for significantly less than their normal fee. It’s a real labor of love.”
Production begins in November in Budapest.
I’ve finally added captures of Sebastian from the 2005 film Red Doors into the gallery. Who doesn’t love a little baby faced Seb? 😉
Instead of replacing the current captures already uploaded into the gallery I simply added a secondary album for the now Blu-ray captures I have now added of Sebastian from the mini-series Labyrinth which aired in 2012. Enjoy!
I’ve added blu-ray captures of Sebastian as Billy in the 2012 thriller Gone starring Amanda Seyfried. You can view those in our gallery now.